If you want to be one of the first to own one of Apple’s brand new CarPlay infotainment centres, then you might need to spend quite a bit of money, as the first cars have been going out with them pre-installed. The only downside is, those cars are Ferraris.
Just yesterday, Ferrari confirmed the first delivery of a brand new vehicle featuring Apple’s CarPlay system to a client in Italy. It’s the new Ferrari FF model too, so it’s a quarter of a million pound buy. We can understand if you don’t fancy dishing that out for what is in essence, a fancy stereo.
Of course though, Ferrari is a business that has a strong customer base, despite the lofty price tags, so expects to deliver many more of its latest super car in the next few weeks.
“Deliveries of the Ferraris sporting the innovative integrated Apple technology commenced over the last few days and the cars are now arriving at their final destinations and will hit the road all over the world,” Ferrari said. “In Europe, they are bound for Germany, Great Britain, France and Switzerland while others have been dispatched to the United States and Japan.”
The CarPlay system is an important upgrade for Ferrari though, and it will be for other automakers once they start shipping vehicles with it pre-installed. Like Nvidia’s Android Auto and some of the systems being developed by Nvidia, introducing stereo and navigation equipment powered by high performing back-end hardware could really change our relationship with our vehicles. Combined with the power of a contemporary smartphone, the infotainment centre can act as a media hub, streaming movies and TV shows to different screens in the vehicle, leverage the cloud for added processing and storage, or operate like a standard satellite navigation tool.
There’s also the potential for advanced diagnostics, business on the go, even certain future autonomous features could be powered by Apple’s latest hardware.
However much of the innovation is going to come from third party developers – pending Apple approval – as it’s their car specific applications which will really drive change in and out of the vehicle.
While Ferrari’s new FF model is the first to come equipped with CarPlay, other models and manufacturers aren’t far behind. Ferrari has already said that its upcoming new model, the California T, which is set to be unveiled at the Genera Motor Show later this year, will also come with the CarPlay system pre-installed. Other companies doing the same include the likes of Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar, Mercedes Benz and Volvo. As Zdnet points out, some of the could even launch these equipped vehicles within the next few months.
What’s going to be really interesting with this new edutainment system though, is whether which smartphone you own will end up dictating which car you have in the future. If you have an iPhone, are you going to limit yourself to only cars that feature the CarPlay system, or will there be some sort of crossover, where Android users could also make use of the latest Ferrarri’s fancy features?